TED is one of the more interesting organizations out there, essentially an organization trying to improve our world through the exchange of ideas among the intellectual elite (and I mean that in a good way.) There are lots of great speakers at this event each year, many of which are now available online (check out my profile for a few faves.)
Each year the group gives out something called The TED Prize, described as follows:
The TED Prize is designed to leverage the TED Community’s exceptional array of talent and resources. It is awarded annually to three exceptional individuals who each receive $100,000 and, much more important, the granting of “One Wish to Change the World.” After several months of preparation, they unveil their wish at an award ceremony held during the TED Conference. These wishes have led to collaborative initiatives with far-reaching impact.
Bill Clinton won the prize this year, and elected to speak about his attempts to right the non-deeds of his administration in Rwanda. I think the speech is fascinating both in it’s scope of vision, and in the depth of introspection right below the surface. Judge for yourself.
My other thought after seeing this was that – whatever his shortcomings as president – the Bill Clinton of 2007 represents America at it’s best. When we demonstrate through our actions the extent to which we value every human being, and the power of free market principles to improve the lot of ordinary people in dramatic ways, we become invincible in the war of ideas.